Home improvement, also called home renovation or remodeling, is the process of improving a residence. Home improvements can include anything from painting or resurfacing your driveway to installing new kitchen cabinets and counters. However, some improvements are more substantial than others and can add significant value to your home.
Regardless of the size or scope of your project, it’s important to plan ahead and know what you’re getting into before beginning any home improvement projects. If you’re planning to sell your home in the future, it’s especially important to focus on projects that will increase your resale value and appeal to potential buyers.
Experts say that home improvement spending will continue to grow through 2023 as many homeowners look for ways to upgrade their homes without breaking the bank. Kitchen and bathroom updates are always popular, as are additions such as decks or basements. But buyer preferences differ from market to market, so it’s essential to focus on what home improvements are most valued where you live.
Before you begin any major home improvement projects, consult a professional contractor to ensure that your plans are solid and the work will be completed properly. When choosing a contractor, ask friends and family for recommendations or read online reviews. Make sure that the contractor is insured and licensed in your state. Obtain a written contract that includes an estimated start and completion date, payment schedule and description of the work to be performed including materials and any special requirements. Depending on your state, you may be able to deduct any contractor fees from your income tax.
Some states have regulations regarding home improvement contractors. In New York, for example, a homeowner who hires someone to perform a home improvement project must pay sales tax on the labor costs unless the contractor can provide documentation that the project meets the definition of a capital improvement. A certificate of capital improvement can be obtained by submitting an application to the Department of Taxation and Finance.
There are many DIY home improvement projects that can increase the value of your home. One such project is adding more storage space, which can be accomplished by building shelves or using existing closet space. Another easy and affordable DIY home improvement is upgrading your kitchen and laundry appliances with energy-efficient models. These upgrades not only save money on utility bills, but they also reduce your carbon footprint.